Businesses of any size can become victims to data loss. Recovering it requires money and time, and even then, there’s only so much that can be done. Today we’re discussing the causes and effects of data loss, as well as when it’s time to contact the experts.
The effects of lost data
Losing important data can not only be a major inconvenience for your business but also detrimental to your company’s success in the future. Losing data can heavily impact how employees go about their day-to-day work, as well as requiring the company to fork out money they hadn’t budgeted for.
In the digital era, it’s becoming less and less common for businesses to keep physical hard copies of information. Those that do carry hard copies will often find that they aren’t kept as up-to-date as digital versions, meaning data loss can quickly set the company back years.
If data has been lost through a virus or cyber-attack, it can be hard to identify everything that’s gone missing. Additional corrupt files or damaged documents will be found later down the line, rather than immediately, so having an IT company on board available for data recovery Kansas City and US-wide can help keep up the recovery momentum.
It’s also worth mentioning the impact it can have on both employee productivity. With data loss, employees will be expected to take time out of their day to contact IT support for recovery or find old copies of data to use. All of this can really slow down processes and affect overall productivity in the office.
Damaged customer relationships
Worse still, when word gets out about data loss, customers will quickly lose trust in your business. Companies are legally required to inform clients of data and security breaches, and unfortunately, this honesty can quickly lead to clients moving their business elsewhere or becoming untrusting of your services. Even once data is recovered and new security plans put in place, it will take a long time to rebuild customer loyalty.
Not only does a security breach or loss of data cost your company money to fix, but the damaged customer relationships will also lead to smaller profits. With a lack of trust in your business, more clients and customers are likely to find new service providers, meaning you’ll lose out on sales. Data losses have been known to cause a huge number of companies to go out of business within the year.
Causes of data loss
There are 10 main ways data loss can occur, some of which are easy to prevent.
Without realizing it, employees can often overwrite important files, remove text, or delete documents. It’s hard to identify the cause of the data loss as the person responsible doesn’t actually know they’ve done something! Everything from spilling a cup of tea to accidental hard drive formatting can cause data loss.
The easiest way to combat this is by providing proper training to all employees. Employees should be informed on how data is processed and how they should use data and files properly.
Viruses and malware can cause significant issues for businesses, one of which is data loss. Viruses can completely destroy a company’s functionality, as well as stealing important personal data.
Businesses of all sizes should make sure to use the most up-to-date and best-suited anti-virus software on all of their devices. Additional anti-malware and data security software should also be used.
Hard Drive Damage
Damage to the company’s hard drive is a serious problem. The majority of data losses come from hard drive damage, too. Out of the thousands of hard drive crashes to occur every week, the main cause is mechanical issues, but some can be from human error.
Hard drives can be damaged by dropping a device, overheating, or even just through age.
To prevent damage, keep the cooling fans clean and free from dust. As an extra layer of protection, be sure to backup files onto an external drive regularly.
Power cuts or shortages – especially when the office is empty – can cause significant data loss. We all take our computers for granted, and as such, probably don’t save our work as often as we should. A power cut can shut down systems and get rid of anything unsaved – meaning plenty of data can be lost with a flick of a switch.
Theft of work phones or laptops can cause serious security breaches. Laptop theft can heavily impact a business, and finding a way to retrieve a stolen laptop is incredibly difficult – and usually unsuccessful.
Devices kept within the office should be locked away securely when not in use. Those that are working remotely need to make sure they do as much as they can to prevent theft too.
Spilling liquids on your phone or laptop can quickly short circuit the device, and data can be lost. Obviously, the easiest way to prevent this is by keeping liquids well away from electronic devices.
Extreme weather, fires, or natural disasters like typhoons or earthquakes can easily damage technology, servers, or infrastructure and lead to data loss. If your business is located in a disaster-prone area, be sure to regularly back up files onto a different drive in a secure location.
Software that is incorrectly shutdown can quickly become corrupt. And if the software can’t reopen, you’ll lose all the data stored within it.
When powering down computers, or shutting software systems on your desktop, make sure to follow the correct procedure.
Hard Drive Formatting
Error messages or system prompts can cause accidental hard drive formatting that can cost the business thousands. Employees can easily misinterpret a system prompt and, as such, click the wrong response.
Fortunately, when data is lost through accidental formatting, it can be recovered by using a simple data recovery software or by contacting your IT company.
Of course, one major danger for businesses is cyber-attacks. Hackers and criminals can access and remove personal data to use or sell for themselves. Using poor security or low-quality firewalls will make you more vulnerable to these types of attacks.
To understand more about how to prevent data loss, it is definitely worth speaking to IT management companies in your area. They’ll be able to find you the perfect package to help with security, training, and system management.